Not long after the band One Direction was formed in 2010, fans — mostly teenaged girls — began shipping Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson, who seemed to have a very close friendship. Fans’ desire to see Harry and Louis romantically involved was expressed through fan fiction, conspiracy theories, and of course, the now famous hashtag #Larry — "Larry Stylinson" was the nickname assigned to the fictional relationship between the two men and was soon shortened to just Larry. Harry Styles has addressed the rumours before and doesn't seem the have any real problem with the Larry Shippers. However, many have long believed that Louis Tomlinson takes issue with the rumours because he has never addressed them and even blocked the word “Larry” from his Instagram. In a recent interview with The Sun, Tomlinson finally revealed his true feelings about the Larry rumours and what he has to say isn't pretty.
Tomlinson told The Sun that the huge conspiracy that he and bandmate Harry Styles were romantically involved put pressure on their friendship and ultimately led to issues between them. In the beginning, the Larry rumours upset the singer because he was in a committed relationship with Eleanor Calder, with whom he has recently gotten back together. He explained in the interview, "When it first came around I was with Eleanor, and it actually felt a little bit disrespectful to Eleanor, who is my girlfriend now. I’m so protective over things like that, about the people I love."
According to the 25-year-old, the conspiracy also began to affect his relationship with Styles. He said, "it created this atmosphere between the two of us where everyone was looking into everything we did. It took away the vibe you get off anyone. It made everything, I think on both fences, a little bit more unapproachable."
We understand how it would be uncomfortable for the world to be over-analysing your every move and openly wishing you would cheat on your girlfriend. However, we also can't help but wonder if it was the homoerotic nature of the rumours contributed to the male friendship's demise. In this world of toxic masculinity, it wouldn't be all that surprising. Though we respect that these rumours put the two men in a difficult position, we can't help but wish they had been able to take the Larry conspiracy in stride and seen it for what it was, a safe way for young women to explore their sexuality.